Press release from Henderson County Partnership for Economic Development:
2019 marked the first year of the Made in Henderson County Apprenticeship Program, where 21 Henderson County graduating seniors were accepted into the program. Through an ongoing partnership with Henderson County Public Schools (HCPS), Blue Ridge Community College (BRCC), the Henderson County Partnership for Economic Development (HCPED), and local industry partners, year two will launch this spring with more participating employers and more apprenticeship spots available.
A registered North Carolina Apprenticeship with the N.C. Department of Commerce, the program offers students a tuition-free Mechatronics Engineering Certificate, earned over the course of four semesters. Throughout the internship, students will spend one day in the classroom at Blue Ridge Community College, and the rest of the week working at one of the partner companies. This year’s cohort of companies includes the four returning from last year: Elkamet, WestRock, Meritor, and GF Linamar, and welcomes three new employers to the group: Raumedic, Byers Precision Fabricators, and Mountain Showcase Group. Students will earn a competitive salary throughout the process and are guaranteed a job offer upon completion of the program.
Informational sessions will be held at each HCPS high school during the month of February for interested students and educators to learn more about the program. Parents and family of the students are encouraged to attend a kickoff event at Blue Ridge Community College on Thursday, February 20 at 5:30 p.m. to learn more about the apprenticeship program. The program is also open to adults, so there will be a second kickoff event held on Saturday, February 22 at 10:30 a.m. where anyone interested in learning more is welcome to attend. Participating companies will be offering group or individual tours of their facilities in March.
To apply or view a schedule of important dates for the Made in Henderson County Manufacturing Apprenticeship, you can visit the website at www.madeinhendersoncounty.com/apprenticeship. Applications will be accepted until April 9 at 5:00 p.m.
WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING
Brittany Brady, President of the Henderson County Partnership for Economic Development:
“The MIHC Apprenticeship program is a game changer for those looking for education and on the job application. We are fortunate to have great partnerships to launch such a dynamic program in Henderson County.”
Dr. Laura Leatherwood, President of Blue Ridge Community College:
“We are pleased to partner with Henderson County Public Schools, the Partnership for Economic Development, and local employers once again to provide this fantastic opportunity for local students. People attend Blue Ridge because they are seeking to better their lives with a career, and students who join the Apprenticeship program will be given a competitive edge for a great career in advanced manufacturing in Henderson County.”
Bo Caldwell, Superintendent of Henderson County Public Schools:
“Henderson County Public Schools is honored to partner with Blue Ridge Community College and our local manufacturing companies in the MIHC Manufacturing Apprenticeship Program. It’s the ideal career pathway for our students who see themselves in advanced manufacturing after high school – it’s a tremendous opportunity for a student to earn a tuition-free Mechatronics Engineering Certification while employed with a partner company.”